It's time

Submitted on May 24, 2011 by  tatty2gud

I like this space, for 1 reason. I don't have to be strong when I write here, I don't have to hide any shame or fear, I can bring down the walls I cave myself in, even if its just for a while.

Right now I don't feel so strong, I'm scared... Terrified more than the day I found out I have the virus, more than the day I buried my friend thinking I was next. But fear can either cripple me or make me brave... Sometimes I feel both. But right now I feel brave.

Why am I terrified? Well God has a weird sense of humour, my daughter(11yrs old) has been researching about HIV; why? I don't know. But it made me realise... It's time I disclose to her even if I don't know how she'll respond. I'm confident with her level of awareness about the virus but I'm not confident about her reaction to my disclosure. How do I tell her that her beautiful, genius, invincible, multitasking mom has the virus? How do I break the news to her without breaking her? That's what's terrifying me...

Sometimes I wish I could have left her in foster care. Pray for me as I embark on the hardest task ever given to me...

Submitted by celina5000

Be strong, be honest, be the mother she needs to help her with her fears. She will always love you. You can thank her for loving you so much that she took the initiative to search for answers. She must be very intelligent and brave and is sending you a message : Mom I want to be with you in this.

In my 27 years of having HIV, I raised 3 children. When I disclosed to them, the miracle of love grew in our lives. We learnt just how precious we were to each other.

Bon courage and peace. Gisele

Submitted by Marilyn

Hi Tatty,

Have courage! My oldest daughter was only 10 years old when I was diagnosed. I decided early on to let my children know of my status (fearing that I was going to die soon). I feel it was the best thing I did for them. Your daughter will not only see you as an invinsible mom, but a strong mom, a fighter, a mom who knows how to handle adversity and who to rely on. I feel it was the best lesson I could have taught my children, that their will be things that happen to us in life that we may not be prepared for, that there will be times when we will be scared, wea k and unsure of the future - but that we have a God whom we can rely on to see us through those dark times and that the adversities in our life will help shape us to become stronger, love harder, live with purpose.

You will be surprised at how strong children are. She may hurt, but it will be ok - because you will comfort her.

I will keep you in my prayers!

Submitted by joyaloyo

Hi tatty,

i can understand what your going through but i believe you will find the inner strength and when you do so you will be surprised at her reaction. when you think positively about something half of it is already done. And just remember to see the opportunity in that difficulty of disclosure. when my now 4 year old started noticing that i was taking my drugs every other nite he asked me why and at his age i could only tell him that mummy has to take her drugs every nite because she needs them to stay healthy. now he reminds me every night to take them and opens the bottles for me. am hoping that when the time comes i will tell him thats why i was taking the drugs every other night. All will be well my sister, keep the faith!

Submitted by Marilyn

Do you have a therapist, nurse, or elder who can be with you and your daughter when you tell her? Sometimes it is helpful to have a third party assist you with disclosure. Or it might be helpful for you to talk with a professional first before you disclose.

Whatever you decide I wish you the best.

Submitted by Elaine

Knowledege is power, so if she is doing research then hopefully whenever you decide to disclose she will have an understanding of what you have and you won't have to explain that part as much. If she's mature enough at 11 to research HIV, then she is probably mature enough to know that her beautiful, genius, invincible, multitasking mom will always be just that!

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